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2018 Otis Report On The Creative Economy Reveals California Outpaces Nation

Seated left to right: Somjita Mitra, Shawn Johnson, and Bruce Ferguson
Report Shows Strong Entertainment, Fashion And Publishing Sectors

Otis College released its findings today for the 2018 Otis Report on the Creative Economy at the Forum at the College’s Elaine and Bram Goldsmith Campus in the Westchester neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Joining to offer remarks on the Otis Report was Bruce Ferguson, president of Otis College of Art and Design, who welcomed the live and online audience before remarks were given by Somjita Mitra, Director of the Institute for Applied Economics at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation and principal author of the report, and Shawn Johnson, Vice President of Innovation and Experience Design for NBCUniversal. Johnson is an Otis College alumnus. Johnson spoke about the importance of design thinking in the growing creative economy. The launch event is available to watch at www.otis.edu/creative-economy.

Reporting on the release of the report, the Los Angeles Times highlighted that "the creative economy of the Los Angeles region saw significant job growth between 2011 and 2016, with statewide creative employment now exceeding the pre-recession highs observed more than 10 years ago, according to a new study."

Since 2007, Otis College of Art and Design has commissioned the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) to generate the Otis Report on the Creative Economy, first as a report on the Los Angeles Region and, with support from the California Arts Council, later expanded to include a statewide analysis. The reports are invaluable tools to assess the tremendous economic impact and influence of the area's creative sector on the economy. This year the California and Los Angeles editions have been combined into one comprehensive report.

Significant findings in the 2018 Otis Report on the Creative Economy of California include:

  • Creative economy output totaled $407.1 billion (direct, indirect, and induced).
  • The creative economy generated 1.6 million jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and those wage and salary workers earned $141.5 billion in total labor income.
  • With 789,900 direct jobs in the creative economy, California surpasses New York State which has 477,300 jobs followed by Texas at 230,500.
  • With 789,900 direct jobs in the creative economy, California surpasses its pre-recession peak of 767,000 in 2007.
  • The Los Angeles Region has a higher proportion of creative economic workers than the New York metro area, with 8.8 percent of total workers, above New York’s percentage of creative workers at 6.3 percent.
  • Property taxes, state and local personal income taxes, and sales taxes directly and indirectly generated by the creative industries totaled $16.4 billion across all of California.
  • The largest direct job counts in California’s creative sector were in entertainment (192,200), publishing and printing (160,200), and fashion (120,700). Together, these three industries accounted for 59.4 percent of direct creative industries employment in California.]
  • Attendance in arts courses continues to rise through the K-12 students, underlining the importance of arts education to facilitate creativity and move students towards high-earning creative industries.

The 2018 Otis Report features an addendum with commentaries from Mark Slavkin, Director of Education at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Angie Kim, President and CEO of the Center for Cultural Innovation, Tacy Trowbridge, Global Lead, Education Programs at Adobe, and Steve McAdam, Chair of Product Design at Otis College of Art and Design.

Shawn Johnson presenting at the 2018 Otis Report launch event

The 2018 Otis Report on the Creative Economy of the Los Angeles Region and California is available for download online through a newly designed website that allows greater exploration into the report findings at http://www.otis.edu/otisreport.

Funding for the 2018 Otis Report on the Creative Economy was provided by California Arts Council, City National Bank, City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Marsh, Mattel and Moss Adams. The California Arts Council generously underwrote the Otis Report addendum.

Media partners include Arts for Orange County and Californians for the Arts. 

Photo (L:R) Somjita Mitra, Director of the Institute for Applied Economics at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation and principal author of the report, Shawn Johnson, Vice President of Innovation and Experience Design for NBCUniversal, and Bruce Ferguson, president of Otis College of Art and Design.